»A Message From The Dean

Dean CampbellWelcome to the Chapman University Fowler School of Law web site. If you are a prospective law student, we want to answer all of your questions about how we can assist you in obtaining an outstanding legal education at one of the country's great young law schools. We encourage you to explore our site, visit the law school, or call our Admissions Office to get the information you desire.

While just fifteen years old, the School of Law has risen rapidly in reputation and is currently ranked in the Top Schools category of U.S News and World Report's annual survey. Chapman quickly achieved full ABA accreditation and gained membership in the elite Association of American Law Schools. We are also ranked in the top 10 of Princeton Review's Best Law Schools for "Best Classroom Experience."

Chapman has assembled one of the strongest law faculties in the nation, including four former Supreme Court clerks and many others who achieved exceptional success as lawyers. We developed a comprehensive and high-quality curriculum. Clinical opportunities (to work on real cases) exist in tax law, elder law, constitutional jurisprudence, appellate advocacy, domestic violence, entertainment law and mediation. Our students extern in a variety of legal offices, including for judges, public defenders, prosecutors, other government agencies, and major corporations. We offer several certificate programs to allow our students to specialize in certain areas, including the new Business Law Emphasis Program launched in fall 2011. Chapman also offers joint-degree programs that enable qualified students to earn a JD/MBA at Chapman's Argyros School of Business or a JD/MFA at Chapman's Dodge College of Film and Media Arts. We sponsor award-winning student teams in mock trial, appellate moot court, mediation and negotiation competitions.

The School of Law is a welcoming place, where freedom of expression is cherished. Every student can find a niche and an opportunity for intellectual excitement. We have a vibrant Student Bar Association and more than three dozen student groups. We also have a speaker series that brings renowned lawyers and legal scholars to the school from across the nation and beyond. Past speakers have included the former president of the American Civil Liberties Union, the former Justice on the Constitutional Court of South Africa, and the former Solicitor General of the United States. As part of the greater Chapman University community, we also participate in the University's speaker series, including most recently the week-long visit of Nobel Peace Prize winner Elie Wiesel. Our students travel overseas as well, as we recognize the growing importance of international aspects of what lawyers do.

Part of what makes the law school special is its wonderful physical environment. We are fortunate to reside in the spectacular Donald P. Kennedy Hall, a magnificent structure designed just for the law school.  The Chapman University campus is located in the historic "Old Towne" district of Orange, California. Law students enjoy all of the university amenities, including sports and fitness facilities and the Olympic aquatic center, main library research and study accommodations, and music and drama productions. The law building is a five-minute walk from historic downtown Orange, filled with restaurants and coffee houses. And, of course, we are located in the heart of Southern California, an engine of tremendous economic growth, and home to renowned cultural and arts centers, professional sports complexes and student-friendly nightlife.

The study of law will prepare you for life as a professional. To be a professional is to bind yourself to ethical standards, to help those who seek your advice within the boundaries of the spirit as well as letter of the law, and, above all, to find your fulfillment in helping others. Lawyers serve as officers of the court, and we take that role very seriously at Chapman. Lawyers are the guardians of liberty, great and small. Our graduates serve with honor and distinction, whether in handling the smallest matter for a single client, or advising national and international governments on upholding the rule of law.

We hope you will join us at the law school. Your experience, while academically demanding, will be enjoyable, and your education will prepare you to practice in any state and in any field of law.  Welcome to Chapman, a law school that is emerging as an institution of quality in American legal education.

-Dean Tom Campbell

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